I hate Government paperwork.
I never thought I would be the kind of libertarian “let’s get Government off the backs of the small businessperson and cut through red tape” kind of guy, but that’s what I’ve become. I hate the seemingly endless street of brown envelopes that come in the daily mail from some arm of the federal government: income tax, payroll tax, GST, mandatory StatsCan surveys. I simply don’t have the time. Not only the time to fill out the forms themselves, but to learn, each time anew, what each form means, when it is due, and so on.
And as a result I am often late with sending in forms. I blithely operate under the assumption that I “just sent that return in a couple of weeks ago” while months upon months of returns pile up on my desk.
This is how it came to pass that one of the businesses in my ouvre came to have twenty-one outstanding GST returns due.
Conventional wisdom would have it that this degree of tardiness would see the RCMP knocking down the door with battering rams, etc.
But in this case I simply got a call from a nice man named Leo Murphy at the GST office here in Charlottetown. He laid out the situation for me, and told me that if I emailed him the information that would have otherwise been sent in on the GST returns (basically how much we took in, and how much GST we collected), he would enter it directly into their system and that would be that.
He was helpful, pleasant, responded quickly to email, and was generally about as far from what we all imagine to be a GST enforcement guy to be like.
So, hats off to Leo Murphy. Thanks!